Golf tourney to benefit D.A.R.E.
Faith Huffman | News-Telegram News Editor

MAY 10, 2006 - For several years, Hopkins County Sheriff's Office has designated an officer to visit each of the six rural schools located within Hopkins County to better educate fifth-graders about drugs and alcohol and the importance of resisting those substances.

The Hopkins County Drug Abuse Resistance Education Program relies almost exclusively on fundraisers and donations to pay for the program, which serves about 250 youths in the six rural school districts in Hopkins County annually.

Donated funds still fall short of costs, which include workbooks, T-shirts and graduation for each class.

That's why fundraisers are integral to the survival of the program. In the past, the program has received a boost from Hopkins County Law Enforcement Association and local talent Alina Tatum, who raised funds through annual benefits such as an annual summer golf tourney and country music showcase during fall festival. Last year, HCLEA even held a "Blue Hawk Run" motorcycle ride in October to bolster waning fund balances to ensure the program continued.

The tradition of the annual D.A.R.E. golf tourney continues this year, only under new sponsorship. Hopkins County D.A.R.E. will be partnering with Hopkins County Sheriff's Office's Reserves Program to host the benefit Monday, June 19, at The Links at Land's End. The "1st Annual Driving Against Drug Abuse Golf Tournament" includes two sessions, a morning round which begins at 8 a.m., and an afternoon session which begins at 1 p.m. 

"Hole sponsors and teams are needed," said Hopkins County Chief Sheriff's Investigator Andy Chester, who also oversees the reserve program at the sheriff's office. "There are two starts and we need teams to sign up for both. We'll take the first 22 teams to sign up by the cutoff date (June 12). If they get their forms in by the deadline, they can pay at the door if they need to, but we need to get those forms in. We need potential sponsors to contact us as quick as possible."

"Hopkins County D.A.R.E. program is operated strictly by donations and contributions from the public. This is going to be our main fundraiser this year, so we need as many that can to sign up and help. We really need teams to sign up and get those applications in. D.A.R.E. depends on this," said Reserve Sgt. Glynda Chester, who is also the county's D.A.R.E officer. "We need applications in by the 12th of June so we can let Links at Land's End know."

Team and sponsor application forms are available at the sheriff's office, or by contacting Andy Chester at 903-438-4050 or Glynda Chester at 903-348-3860, or any deputy. Those unable to pick up a form can get in contact with either Andy or Glynda Chester to have someone bring the application to them.

The fee to participate in the four-person scramble is $260, or $65 a person. Anyone wanting to participate who is unable to put together a team can contact Glynda to be assigned to a team. The team/player fee includes lunch, green fees and carts.

Prizes have been donated for the closest to the pin, longest drive, and putting contest for each session. The grand prize of a Kubota four-wheeler was donated by Farm Country for the hole-in-one prize.

Raffle tickets for a Remington .270-cal. rifle and an outdoor smoker are also being sold for $5 each, or 22 tickets for $100. Tickets are available from either Chester, any deputy, and at the sheriff's office.

For more information about the June 19 D.A.R.E. golf tourney, the D.A.R.E. program or raffles, contact either Andy or Glynda Chester.

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